Adams County Illinois Civil War Newspaper Articles

Civil War Records

An article from the Quincy Herald Whig in May 1935 - Provided by Jan Walker

Few Civil War Veterans Will March in Parade Here on Memorial Day

Fewer Than Thirty Union Vets Live in Quincy Now

A few, perhaps fewer than half a dozen union veterans of the American Civil war, will march in the Memorial parade Thursday.  Aged white haired men, shaken with their infirmities, may ride in automobiles through the streets of Quincy where years ago a thousand marched.  Their hearts will beat tumultuously as the crowds cheer as they pass, for their courage is high even though the years have taken toll of their bodies.

It has been seventy years since Appomattox, when Robert E. Lee, idol of the Confederacy, surrendered the pitiful remnants of the army of Northern Virginia to General U.S. Grant, the closing act in that greatest, deadliest, bloodiest drama in American history.

So far as can be learned there are fewer than thirty union veterans of the Civil war in Quincy.  There is no record, no way of finding out how many men lived here who once battled for the South.  It may be as the Union veterans in their coats of blue pass by, honored by the crowds, men who once wore the grey may be standing on the  sidewalks honoring too the aged warriors that they once opposed.

Records of the Soldiers' Home show that there are twenty-three union veterans living there.  In Quincy outside the home there are  five or six.  The ages of these veterans range from 86 years, that of  Capt. John E. Andrew, to the ages of Isaac Brittendall and Joseph Franks of the Soldiers' Home, who are each 98 years old.  Nearly all the veterans in Quincy are more than 90 years of age.

A check up with Capt. John E. Andrew gives this list of members of John Wood Post, living in  the city, outside the home.  Their names and ages are L. D. Vance, 88; Michael Cashman, 89; John H. Heitland, 89; Thomas Meil, 91; Capt. H. C. Turner, 92.

James McChelaney, aged 96, is a veteran who lives in his own bachelor home at 1613 North Second street, and is taking life easy.  He is not a member of John Wood Post.

Other members of John Wood Post living are "Dad" Mullens, 90, of St. Louis; Capt. John V. Henry of Kansas, 91; and A. J. Nichols of New York, aged 95.  Benjamin W. Moulton, now in the Soldiers' Home, is 93 years old.

The veterans in the home and their ages as recorded in the books of A. W. Michel, home adjutant are Jacob Short, 86; John Carson, 94; William H. Dowell, 89; John Boruff, 92; George Miller, 89; Jacob Mize, 92; Benjamin Brown, 89; Benjamin Garland, 89; F. M. Meadows, 92; William Hawkins, a Negro, 94; Benjamin W. Moulton, 93; Pitt Boulware, 90; Glen Bower, 89; Isaac Brittendall, 98;  Joseph Franks, 98; Samuel Hazel, 88; Caradon Johnson, 89; Samuel Kelly, 89; Henry Kimmel, 93; James McCullough, 97; Franklin Ransom, 93, Wiley Rose, 89;  and Michael Buck, 91.  Richard Lewis died in the home on April 15 aged 91 years. 

It may be that there are some aged veterans in Quincy whose name is not in the list given, but a sincere effort to name all the men  in the city and in the home reveals the fact that there are only a few veterans living here and that the great majority are too feeble to participate in the Memorial day parade, although automobiles will be provided and they will have the aid, love, and sympathy of the various patriotic organizations who will be giving them tender care.

How different the appearance of the veterans will be this year than in the great Memorial day parades of forty years ago.  There was a time when John Wood Post had 600 names on its roster.  In those days the veterans disdained to ride.  Carriages were not for them.  Proudly they marched in serried ranks, their muskets tilted, their bayonets shining, their feet resounding on the cobblestones.  How joyfully they stepped as the drums beat, the fifes shrilled and the bugles blew...."Tramp, Tramp, Tramp, the Boys are Marching." What was the mile journey to Woodland cemetery for  the Memorial day services to men who had marched with Sherman from the Mississippi to the sea?

It was a slight task then to carry a musket a half an hour to men who had carried their rifles and forty rounds, their blanket rolls and knapsacks from Atlanta to the sea.  Pounding the cobblestones with willing feet was a joy to men  who had trudged hundreds of miles through Georgia mud or South Carolina sand, sleeping on the wet ground, building endless miles of corduroy roads, leaving their work to repel on onrush of their foes.  But that was forty years ago.  It has been seventy years since the bugles blew peace.  The boys of that far off heroic age are the aged veterans of today.

Recent statistics from the pension bureau of the United States government and from the pension  rolls of southern states show that of the great blue army which once numbered more than two million, a scant 14,474 were registered April 1 (1935). Confederate veterans living  numbered 5,612, according to the pension rolls.  In the war unofficial estimates place the number lost at 800,000.  The number killed on either side will never be known for in lonely swamps and in singing rivers of the Southland unknown soldiers by the hundreds perished, forgotten by all save their Creator.

An article from the Quincy Herald Whig, May 1935 - Provided by Jan Walker


"Youngest Veteran" of Civil War to Give Memorial Address
Capt. John E. Andrew, former managing officer of the Illinois Soldiers' Home, the "youngest veteran" of the Civil war in Quincy left Wednesday morning for Moline where he will deliver the  Memorial day address in the national cemetery there, Thursday afternoon.

The Memorial day exercises are sponsored by the ten living members of the Moline G. A. R. post and this will be the  principal Memorial service held  in the quad-cities.  It is planned to have a giant parade precede the ceremonies at the cemetery.

Captain Andrew has in many ways the full right to be called the "youngest veteran" in Quincy if not in the state.  He is 86 years of age and while there are perhaps a few men of that age or a year or so younger in the country, who wore the blue and served in the closing years of the Civil war, it is doubtful if there are any Civil war veterans who have the vigor, the pep and the mental clarity of this old soldier.

He enlisted when he was fifteen years of age.  He marched with Sherman to the sea.  He was wounded in the left leg at the battle of Peach Tree Creek, one of the fiercest struggles of the war.

After the war Capt. Andrew plunged into civic life and into the political arena with the vigor that he has retained in a large measure all his years.  He was sheriff of Piatt county for several terms, and mayor of Monticello four terms.  He was a deputy revenue collector, and, from 1913 to 1920, he was the managing officer of the Soldiers' Home.  His activity has gone far to keep John Wood Post, G. A.A., a live organization in the last few years.  Capt. and Mrs. John E. Andrew live at 2101 Hampshire street. 

Newspaper clipping, paper and date unknown

Concord Veteran Cast First Vote For McClelland

Clayton, Ill., Nov. 8,--Among the voters in Concord township last Tuesday was Joseph Renaker, a Civil War veteran, and the only surviving member of the G.A.R. in Concord township.  Mr. Renaker voted for the first time seventy-two years ago, when he cast his ballot for General McClelland, a Democrat, who was a candidate for the presidency against Abraham Lincoln, and Mr. Renaker says he has voted Democratic since that time except when he voted for Theodore Roosevelt when he was a candidate on the Progressive ticket.
The voting place seventy-two years ago was in a schoolhouse near the location of the present town hall.  Mr. Renaker is ninety-three years old and very spry for his years.  He can recall much of the early history of the county. 

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